Apple Technology Might Take Restaurants to the Next Level – Part 1
Posted on September 10, 2010
If you have ever been in an Apple store and purchased something you may have noticed they do things slightly different. When you check out the Apple employee will pull out an iPod touch and quickly ring up your merchandise, swipe your credit card and email you your receipt. Easy, painless and paperless. This efficient process has recently become all the rage in tech circles looking to expand into the restaurant industry. Since launching the POS system back in 2009 Apple has seen an increase in interest from all industries. “According to insiders, Apple has been deluged with inquiries about the POS system, which is comprised of a sleek, custom-designed and manufactured shell that surrounds the iPod touch, and also incorporates a barcode scanner and magnetic stripe reader. The hardware links to custom-programmed [Mac OS X] software that streamlines the process of taking cash, credit or debit card payments for merchandise,” ifoAppleStore reports. (source).
But how can such a small device help a restaurant become more streamlined and can the restaurant industry truly adjust to technology like this? Many developers across the world are looking to the Apple POS technology as an inexpensive and easy to use way for waiters and waitresses to take orders, track orders and print out check recipes for patrons. Michael Benaroch, part owner of Cluster Systems and Technologies who was one of the first to develop and sell these type of POS terminals to restaurants, states that the system is extremely easy to use because it is just a smaller version of a touch screen POS terminal. “It takes about 20 minutes to be trained on the touchscreen, and then if you know the screen, it’s almost no adjustment to use the iPod,” he said. (source)
Anyone who has ever seen or used an iPod touch knows that they are very slim, relatively light and have a long battery life. The perfect device for a POS like this. They are also far cheaper to buy then a traditional POS terminal. Costing around $600 for an iPod touch with everything you need to get started will save restaurants from the high cost of traditional POS terminals at around $2000 to $3000 per terminal. However, the real wow factor here is the ability to stay organized, save on paper and keep the service running smoothly.
The recently released ipad is yet another option for restaurants to upgrade to a higher technology based POS process. Restaurant’s in Japan have already started to take the steps to use the iPad as menus. I will cover that topic in part 2 of this blog. When it comes to handheld ordering devices for a restaurant POS small, the easy to carry and easy to use iPod Touch has an interface that is hard to compare to anything else on the market. It really is a great way to take your restaurant business to the next level of technology without having to pay out too much!
Although the word is still out on whether Apple will release their system to the public there is no question that the demand is there for the picking (pun intended). But Apple shouldn’t wait too long to decided as there are plenty of developers out there working on a POS of their own to be used with the iPod Touch and iPad.